Monday, March 15, 2010

Boire Un Coup

I am having a little bit of cabin fever and can not believe I am stuck in Toronto of all places. Oy, the things you will do for love.

So to make myself feel better- I drink… not alone. If no one is in the room it might be considered alone... but someone is defiantly in the room, or in the next room, but still in the house. I really hope that counts.

To cope with living in a new place with few friends and the rainy weather, I made myself a demi-peche. I believe that is what it is called.

Once upon a time I lived in France and was introduced to many great new things like smoking and pretending to be philosophical. While I smoked, and sketched in my journal, I was served a cold delicious demi-peche. I would have had coffee but I like to change it up.

Ingrédients pour 1 personne

2 cl de sirop de pêche

25 cl de bière

Réalisez la recette "Demi-peche" directement dans le verr.Verser d'abord :
-environ 2cl de sirop de pêche dans votre chope .
-Remplissez ensuite de 25 cl de biere.
C'est a vous de doser la quantité de sirop comme dans un diabolo pour que ca ne soit pas trop sucré, mais que le goût soit présent.
Vous pouvez mélanger doucement avec une cuillere pour bien mélanger les deux éléments.

Should I leave it in French…yes! Bisous!!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Dr. Cake

Dr. Pepper Chocolate Cake Recipe

(makes one 13×9x2″ baking pan)



1 1/2 cup Dr. Pepper soda

1/2 cup vegetable or canola oil

1 stick melted butter (8 tablespoons)

4 tablespoons cocoa powder

2 cups sugar

2 cups flour

1 teaspoon baking soda

2 eggs

1/2 cup milk


- Preheat oven to 350° F and grease or spray with cooking spray a 13×9x2″ baking pan.

-Begin by combining the Dr. Pepper, oil, melted butter and cocoa. Mix well.

-In a separate small bowl lightly beat the eggs and milk together. add to mixture.

- Mix dry ingredients together (sugar, flour and baking soda), add to mixture, mix well. Don’t over beat.

- Pour into a greased baking pan and bake at 350° for 20-25 minutes or until toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Be careful not to over bake.

Chocolate Frosting Recipe


1 stick salted butter (8 tablespoons)

4 tablespoons cocoa powder

8 tablespoons milk

4 cups confectioners sugar (powdered sugar)


- In a saucepan, combine butter, cocoa powder and milk together over medium heat, stirring occasionally until melted and smooth.

- Add in the powdered sugar a little at a time, combining after each addition until smooth.

- Pour over warm cake.

Where I Go On Sunday Afternoon

Toronto is full of great cafes and restaurants. I have observed that Toronto locals find where they like to go and usually stick to them. People like to stay in their neighborhoods. For a big city where the world is your oyster (yes, a popular cliche) Torontonians like to stay near their homes. Since I am new in town and am trying to "go native" I have been drinking many cups of coffee in many different cafes. I love coffee because it loves me back. I drink it and in turn it makes me happy. We have a great relationship. In short, here is one of my favorite places to go on a Sunday. I have been several times...

Tango Palace Coffee Company

The place is warm friendly and the barista knows most of the locals by name. Since I am not originally from Toronto it has taken me some time to find a place to go for a morning brew. I felt very comfortable here right from the first meeting. It reminded me of a cafe back home.

Tango Palace picks and chooses from several bakeries across Toronto so everything you order is delicious. I often have the dilemma of only choosing one treat. I often forget that I have the power of ordering what I want without someone telling me I can only have one.

If you are looking for a nice place to sit, read/do work (why do work on a sunday?!), and have a cup of coffee. I would consider Tango Palace.

Tango Palace is open from 7am to 11pm. Plenty of time to stop by for a treat. Look at those people in the photo, all relaxed, drinking their coffee. I know you want to be doing the same. I often walk home from here because I love stopping by all the great vintage shops.

No website for this place but join the facebook group.

I am coming off my coffee high... worst part of my relationship with coffee.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Roasted Butternut Squash Apple Soup

I love this soup. It is always great to serve as a started at a dinner party. For guests I swirl in some heavy cream. You can not go wrong with this soup!
side note- The receptionist at my office kept a delivery I was expecting hostage for 2 weeks. I ended up just having a bowl of soup and forgetting all about it. But if she does it again... oh... oh... I might bribe her with cookies!

My favorite pureed soup. MMmmmmm rich and smooth...even a little spicy.

Chopped up butternut squash ready to go into the oven... they look so happy!

My horrible knife... that does the trick. I dream of the day that I get beautiful knives....

( I think I need a minute... I am thinking about sexy knives and a bright red le creuset)

The apples give it an extra luxury.

This is before the soup meets the blender

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup

1 (1 ½ pound) butternut squash, peeled seeded and rough chopped

3 tablespoons olive oil

¾ teaspoon salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

¼ cup Italian sausage, removed from the casing

1 cup small dice onion

1 peeled, cored and cubed Apple

½ cup small dice carrot

½ cup small dice leeks

2 tablespoons minced shallots

1 tablespoon minced garlic

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

1 ½ quarts chicken stock

2 teaspoons maple syrup

1 teaspoon fresh chopped sage leaves

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Place the chopped squash in a medium-size mixing bowl. Drizzle the squash with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and season with ¼ teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon black pepper. Line a shell pan with partchment paper or aluminum foil and place the squash on top of the sheet pan. Set the sheet pan into the oven and roast for 30 minutes, or until the squash is lightly caramelized and tender.

Remove the squash from the oven and set aside. Place a 1-gallon saucepan over medium high heat and add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil to the pan and render the Italian sausage. Cook, stirring often until the meat is caramelized and has released most of its fat, about 3 minutes. Add the onions, carrots, celery,apple and leeks in the pan and sweat, stirring often for 5 to 7 minutes. Andd the shallots and garlic to the pan and sweat for 1 minute stirring continuously. Deglaze the pan with the vinegar and add the chicken stock to the pan. Place the squash in the pan with the maple syrup and sage.

Bring the pan to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Continue to cook the soup for 30 minutes, or until the vegetables are all tender. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup to a smooth consistency and velvety texture. Alternately, you can puree the soup in batches using a blender. Taste the soup and re-season if necessary with ½ teaspoon of salt and 1/8 teaspoon of pepper. Keep warm until serving. About 6 servings.

Enjoy! I always do.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Tim Hortons


I love free! Free food! Free! Free!

So I am grabbing a Tim Hortons coffee and hashbrown tomorrow, March 3, 2010. To top it off it is roll up the rim time. I am aiming for a car or a doughnut. I will be glad to get either one.

Speaking of Free.. McDonalds has free coffee till March 14. I could get half my breakfast for free.

Okay this is a short useless post but I am very excited about the free stuff that is being given away.

going to bed!